previous next

[155] and became known as the author of highly coloured tales of the South-west, adopted the name of ‘Tom Owen, the Bee-Hunter,’ an eccentric person who had picturesque adventures on the frontier. Two other men, Samuel A. Hammett (1816– 65) of Connecticut and John Ludlum McConnel (1826-62) of Illinois, travelled in the West and South-west and described their experiences in racy volumes.

Mrs. Partington, the American Mrs. Malaprop, was created by Benjamin Penhallow Shillaber (1814-90) of The Boston Fost and forms the central figure in at least three books, Life and Sayings of Mrs. Partington (1854), Partingtonian Patchwork (1873), and Ike and his friends (1879). Her character and manner of expression may be seen in her chance remarks:

I am not so young as I was once, and I don't believe I shall ever be, if I live to the age of Samson, which, heaven knows as well as I do, I don't want to, for I wouldn't be a centurion or an octagon and survive my factories and become idiomatic by any means. But then there is no knowing how a thing will turn out until it takes place, and we shall come to an end some day, though we may never live to see it.

Her benevolent face, her use of catnip tea, her faith in the almanac, her domestic virtue, and her knowledge of the most significant facts in the life of every person in the village immediately made a large circle of readers recognize the lifelike portrayal of a person known in every American community. It is interesting to observe that her nephew Ike and his experience with the dog and cat and with ‘spirits’ is a striking prototype of Tom Sawyer in his relationship to his Aunt Polly.

Three New York writers of broad burlesque in both prose and verse may be mentioned together. There appeared in The New York herald a series of satirical lyrics in the assumed character of an Irish private in the Union Army who rapidly became famous. These were written by Charles Graham Halpine (1829-68), a versatile Irish journalist and poet who had been with General Hunter in South Carolina, and were published subsequently in two volumes as Life and Adventures, Songs, services and speeches of private Miles O'Reilly (1864). The best of this collection is the amusing account of the visit of the hero to the

President, the members of the Cabinet, and foreign ministers

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)
hide People (automatically extracted)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1890 AD (1)
1879 AD (1)
1873 AD (1)
1868 AD (1)
1864 AD (1)
1862 AD (1)
1854 AD (1)
1829 AD (1)
1826 AD (1)
1816 AD (1)
1814 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: